A cultural geometry: Designing political things in Sweden



In Sweden, a long-standing and pervasive discourse delineates the significance of design—especially “Swedish design”—within a distinctly political framework. Just as the social democratic welfare state is in large part organized to “care” for its citizens, design in Sweden is supposed to “care” for the users of everyday goods. I explore this claim in several sociocultural domains in which different aspects of Swedish design are reproduced. I also present an argument for working with design and designing as ethnographic objects of inquiry.